Good nutrition during pregnancy will help to keep a developing baby and its mother healthy. The need for certain nutrients, such as iron and folate, is increased at this time but only a small amount of extra energy (kilojoules) is needed.
Most experts agree that dieting during pregnancy is very inadvisable. However, there is less agreement on dieting before and after pregnancy. This is a difficult dilemma for the fat woman considering pregnancy-----if you choose to lose weight, will it help or harm the pregnancy (or any subsequent ones)? What should I eat now that I'm pregnant?Nutrition during pregnancy is serious business. What you eat plays a vital role in determining the health of that little one you are so anxiously awaiting. Contrary to common belief, it isn't how much you eat that's so important, but what you eat.Doctors regularly recommend losing weight on the assumption that of course it is going to help, even though there is little study of whether this really does help or hurt in the long run. Even if losing weight offered some advantages, any possible health benefits of losing weight have to be weighed against the considerable risks of dieting itself, especially of yo-yo dieting. Thus, the dieting dilemma is a difficult one indeed. There is more and more pressure on women these days to regain their pre-pregnancy figures and this is only fuelled more and more by stories of new celebrity mothers who manage to regain their figures within a matter of months after delivering their baby.If you have the time, the money and the desire to do this, it is entirely feasible that you can and will lose the weight you gained in a healthy manner. However, if you do not fall into the tax bracket of any of the new celebrity mothers, you are probably going to go it alone and try to lose the weight.This just won’t work. Just about all of these new mothers have a diet and fitness trainer to help them with their exercise routine and dieting after pregnancy. Unless you have access to that kind of professional help, you are better off using the “nine months on, nine months off” rule.This simply means that it took you nine months to put on the weight, you should wait and gradually lose the weight over a similar nine month period of time. When you go to think about it, this is actually very reasonable considering all the demands that you will have on your time with not only a newborn infant on your hands, but also your normal routine.This is why you need to be careful when thinking about dieting after pregnancy. For one thing you need to be as sensible about this as you were about your diet during your pregnancy, and for another thing, if you are breastfeeding your newborn, you will need strength and the proper nutrition to get you through the day.The Post-Pregnancy DietWhether a woman breastfeeds or not, the secret to post-pregnancy nutrition is to gradually regain a desirable figure, while maintaining or restocking nutrient stores. In addition, since some babies are planned and others are surprises, it's never too late to start nourishing the next baby by continuing to eat a diet based on fresh fruits and vegetables, nonfat milk products, whole grains, and protein-rich beans and meats.Most doctors emphasize on getting enough calories through your pregnancy diet - which is why even if you are overweight, you've got to have pregnancy weight gain; if not, your own body fat will be used to support the pregnancy. Your body produces ketones and if this happens, it is harmful for your baby. And that's not advisable. On the other hand, putting on more pregnancy weight than you should is also risky, especially if you don't lose it in at least six months after delivery - as you will be at high-risk for obesity later. If you are underweight, make sure you gain enough weight, especially during the second and third trimesters, because you don't want your baby to be born pre term or smaller than it should.